The Importance of Building Codes

National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) LogoBuilding codes, which first came into use to protect communities from potential earthquake damage in the 1930s, ensure uniform minimum standards of health and safety across the United States.

The philosophy of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) is to ensure the quality of construction at the local level before a disaster by making the Nation's model building codes adequate for all hazards. This makes FEMA's work much easier, both before and after a disaster.

A building code requires that a building or facility be located, designed, and constructed so that any threat to life, health, and welfare of its occupants and the public is minimized or prevented. Over and over again, the enforcement of effective building codes has had the greatest impact on the quality of construction and how structures will withstand the forces of nature.

Last Modified: Friday, 05-Oct-2007 13:19:18 EDT

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